News and Tribune

February 11, 2014

Arson arrest made at Jeffersonville housing complex

$30,000 bond for suspect with history of issues on property


JEFFERSONVILLE — A man with a history of causing problems on Jeffersonville Housing Authority property was taken into custody last week after attempting to evade police.

Maurice Dixon, 25, address unknown, tried to flee on foot after he was found starting a fire on Jeffersonville Housing Authority property Feb. 6, according to police.

Dixon was charged with class B felony arson and criminal trespass and resisting law enforcement, both class A misdemeanors, in Clark County Circuit Court No. 1 Tuesday.

Jeffersonville police and fire officials were called to a city-housing complex near Spring Street and Eastern Boulevard about 6:30 p.m. “regarding some type of fire in the area,” police reported.

“While responding, [JPD] officers and fire department officials were advised someone was actually behind apartment 245 National Avenue pouring some type of accelerant on a fire at the rear of the apartment building,” according to the probable cause affidavit.

A witness at the scene directed police to a man, later identified as Dixon, standing near the building where she reportedly had seen him using an accelerant to start a fire.

As a police officer approached Dixon, he ran from the area.

A foot pursuit ensued by officers in full uniform, who ordered Dixon to stop fleeing.

Police set up a perimeter around the area and located Dixon, who, again, fled on foot, despite officers’ verbal commands to stop.

According to the affidavit, Dixon jumped several fences to reach West Riddle Street, where he was stopped by a K-9 unit.

After he was taken into custody, police determined they were familiar with Dixon from “previous ongoing issues” at the housing-authority property on National Avenue.

“Maurice Dixon had an active ban notice on file prohibiting [him] from being on Jeffersonville Housing Authority property,” according to the affidavit.

Dixon was treated by Yellow EMS for injuries sustained during the K-9 apprehension, police reported.

Dixon refused to speak to police and a fire investigator at the scene, and he requested an attorney.

Behind the housing authority property, police located a charcoal lighter fluid bottle, a cigarette lighter and “some type of burnt debris,” according to the affidavit.

Police also reported Dixon was found with “black or burnt residue” on his hands.

Later in the day, an additional housing authority ban notice was completed, which Dixon refused to sign, according to the affidavit.

According to records from the Michael L. Becher Adult Correctional Complex, Dixon was booked into the jail about 7:40 a.m. Feb. 7.

He remained at the facility Tuesday afternoon, according to jail staff.

According to court records, Dixon is being held under a $30,000 full-cash bond.